Looking for a great training/fitness app?

When training for the 2 Oceans Half Marathon in Cape Town, I needed something to keep track of my progress, and force me to beat my best, and challenge myself. For this, the Nike plus running app was perfect. It kept track of time, average speed per km, fastest and slowest laps, as well as a GPS map overview of where I ran.

This helped me up my distance and speed, and was a great aid for improving my running fitness. But now I am entering a physique program/competition, and will have to do more than just running to compete. So what apps would I recommend for this… Fitocracy!

Fitocracy is a social fitness app, and allows users share the workouts, recipes, tips and other details in a Facebook-like way. It is a good way to interact with like-minded people, and to take interest in your workouts.

You can also track what exercises you did on what day. You find the exercise, enter number of reps, enter the weight used, and presto! The app then calculates a score for you, dependent on the weight (or if you logged running, your time and km’s) and number of reps and exercises you did. Your scores add up, and you advance “levels”. You can then track, in comparison to yourself as well as other like-minded people, you progress and see if you are improving. The stronger/faster you get, the higher your score from a workout.

The app is very simple to use, and does not take a long time to update. I dont have time to sit and play on my phone all evening, and I would assume you dont either.

So give it a shot if you are keen. It may change the way you gym 🙂

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So I’ve entered the Well I am Challenge

men's healthNeed some motivation to get off the couch, and into the gym? How does R20,000 sound?

With some coaxing and persuasion from the girlfriend, we have entered the 2014 challenge. I have my own profile on their system, I received my goody bag with some products and vouchers, and I had my health assessment done. I am now officially in!

How does it work?

Basically I have 100 days to make a meaningful change in my life, get healthy, get fit. The fitness part is not too bad since I trained hard for the 2 Oceans, and I have been playing hockey during the winter season, but now to actually get in shape.

Back in the day I thought “cool, klap gym and get ripped”… not that easy anymore. Now I have to have eating plans, really have to think about my work outs and what I want to achieve, and I have to keep motivated. 100 days seems like a pretty long time to not have comfort food, large quantities of cold beverages and long lazy days on the couch. You arent the only one who likes to watch a series for hours on end.

So whats my game plan?

I will be doing a cross-fit style of training, with mostly functional exercise and strength training. I have some fitness at my disposal, but now to put it to good use.

In a few minutes I will be sprinting up and down a hill outside my guest house I’m staying at in Durban. Looks steep, but abs look better on me than a beer keg. Klap it from day 1 (or technically day minus 1).

I will be posting a before photo soon. Not too embarrassing, except for the undies I am wearing in it… but I have entered the physique competition… and I have seen the previous winners. They… Are… Tank! I am going to have to hit the ground running to accomplish my goal of winning.

But whether I win or not, the point is to try. You cannot win if you dont start, and coming last is better than not starting at all.

I will be posting my progress over the next few weeks, along with some of the stuff I have been eating, and the routines I have been doing. Hopefully one day I will at least beat my previous best physique… that’s my goal for now. Time to run hills!

Photobooth

Mother’s Day… how to spoil that special someone

We all need to thank that special someone in our lives, get them out the house and give them a special day.

What’s better than taking them somewhere awesome, where the food is always good, the vibe is contagious, and the spirit of South Africa is strong? Why not take them to Moyo?

We will have the legendary Picture Booth (photobooth for those not familiar) set up at the Blouberg and Kirstenbosch branches in Cape Town, allowing you to snap, capture and share your proudly South African experience of Mother’s Day. Get your face painted, get in that booth and tell the world over Facebook, Twitter and email that YOUR mom is the best in the business. She is the knees of the bees!

You will be able to see the photos taken at Moyo in real time (on Sunday) of the mom’s and their loved ones celebrating on our Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/thepictureboothza

Will you be joining us on Sunday? You’d better be

The Picture Booth has arrived!

Everyone has parties, weddings and or office events. So what can you do to spice up the event, and create a little bit of fun? Why not rent yourself a photobooth, or rather The Picture Booth!

The Picture booth is ideal for weddings, allowing both the bride and groom, as well as their family and friends at the reception, to snap a photo strip, leave a video message and to generally just have fun. This is a fully digital booth that allows you to share directly on Facebook, Twitter, email or Pinterest your experience of the event. Hours of fun at a funtastic price.

Having a 21st birthday? No problem!

The The Picture Booth also allows you the option of having a wedding or party book created using the photos taken during the event. A great way to hold onto and share your memories of a memorable night.

Wedding books - a great keepsake

Wedding books – a great keepsake

Corporate event? The Picture Booth guys can set-up the booth in such a way that allows for maximum exposure on social media, presents the brand identity through branding the photos as well as the optional vinyls to make the booth look and feel like your own. We can also gather client information, and do surveys directly from the booth.

To find out more about the revolutionary booth, have a look at the website http://www.thepicturebooth.co.za

 

the-picture-booth-logo-full

 

Photobooth

Planning a wedding, party, or corporate event?

So we all want to impress our friends, family and colleagues in some way or another at an event or social gathering. There are various ways to do this… some are expensive, whereas others are cheap but a real hassle. IF ONLY you could find a way to do this in a cost-effective and hassle-free way… well now you can.

Introducing The Picture Booth, the new popular way to impress!

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The Picture Booth is much like your ordinary photobooth solution that you have seen and heard of on TV, the internet, and at social or corporate events. The Picture Booth is a cost effective way of sharing your experience at a gathering of people with the world, and the ones around you. But how is The Picture Booth different from other booths you have seen?

The Picture Booth lets you share your photos directly from the booth itself on your favourite social network, via good old email, or by downloading the shots from your online portal. You can add an Instagram-style filter onto your photo to capture the mood of the evening, your personal preference, or just because you can. You also can also have a USB flash drive couriered to you the week after the event with all you photos on it.

Having a wedding? Why not order one of their wedding books? The wedding books use your favourite photos from the event to create a keepsake, something to put on your coffee table to share with your visitors of the great time you had. You can also have smaller (A5 size) duplicates of the books made to send to your close family and friends.

The main catch of this booth is that the booth is significantly cheaper than other booths you have seen in the market. This is due to this booth doing away with the nice, but sometime frustrating printer, resulting in fewer hassles, and far lower costs. Digital is the way of the future!

For more information and booking information on this new, exciting product, have a look at its website http://www.thepicturebooth.co.za

If a picture speaks a thousand words, then by the end of the night you will have a novel!

2 Oceans Marathon

Two Oceans Marathon: Time to Train

So the other day my work colleague, John informed me that it was the last day to enter to get a ticket for the 2014 Two Oceans Marathon, the most beautiful marathon in the world. Although I enjoy running, I am more of a 5-10km runner, with the idea of running 21km’s being a daunting one.

But what were the chances that I would actually get a ticket, given that thousands of people enter to get a ticket, and I had left it to the very last day to get a ticket via the random ticket draw. I thought I was safe. How wrong I was.

On the day of the draw, I got an email saying that I had a ticket, and that I would be running on 19 April. Flip! I have to start training now!!

Obviously there is a difference running 21km to running your quick, 5km circuit. I am one who likes to run fast, since the faster you run, the faster you get back to the comfort of your flat. Now I would actually have to pace myself, ensure I have enough liquids, eat correctly before the race, and have a training programme. This is going to be different.

So the first thing I did is look for training programmes to ensure that I am fit enough to run the distance, as well as to be able to do it at a decent rate of speed.

There were many training programmes of various lengths of time, differing methods of training. But what they all had in common was that they all looked like a lot of hard work. But I am up for the challenge!

Hopefully I can keep up the positive thoughts, stay consistent with my training, and not losing hope I will be just fine.

Training begins this weekend… wish me luck!

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Summer’s coming – time to get into shape

With the onset of summer in the Mother City, many of us are rushing to the gym to try work off that winter weight (myself included). I have done a lot of reading and research, looking for the best ways to get “beach ready”. I dont want to be the pale AND fat guy!

So what have I found?

I am currently trying out the USN training and eating plan for lean muscle. The training is quite intense, but the eating is the part that strikes me as being the biggest change in my lifestyle.

First off, I went off to my local pharmacy to pick up some USN whey protein and some Phedra-Cut Lipo XT. I know the Phedra-Cut might seem like cheating, but I dont care. It was very effective in the past, so I am going to use it to my full benefit again. Deal with it!

Next it was time to work out the eating plan. USN has a lot of useful plans on their site, an extract of which we have in pamphlet form. Looking at the eating plan I thought to myself, “flip… I am literally eating all the time”. With all the snacks, and other items to keep your metabolism going, you never seem to have an opportunity to get hungry. But I guess that’s the point with these kind of eating plans.

Time to shop. After compiling a grocery list for 4 days worth of food, the bill came close to R500 between two people (my girlfriend and I). This seemed a bit steep at first (since I am lank poor). However, one thing that is great if you are on Discovery Medical Aid, and more specificially on Vitality, you can get 25% back on the healthy foods from your local Pick ‘n Pay. So effectively is costs R375 each, since all the food on the list are regarded as “Healthy Food”. Not too bad then (R46.88 per day per person). I can live with that.

So what does USN think I should be eating? Have a look at a typical day of this health plan:

Breakfast

1 cup of cooked oats with crushed almonds, cinnamon and apple slices

Mid-morning

A fruit, such as an apple, banana, orange or other

Lunch

Either:

Ostrich mince with spinach, on sweet or normal potatoe, or

A tin of tuna (170g) on sead loaf with cottage cheese

Mid-afternoon

Another fruit or almonds


Dinner

Either:

Steak (150g) with mixed vegetable and leafy greens with lemon juice, or

Chicken breast with corgettes (baby marrow), red pepper, and a huge amount of salad with lemon juice, or

Fish fillets (2 fillets) with green beans, red pepper and leafy greens with lemon juice.

Dessert

None 😦

Although the eating takes quite a lot of planning, and having a casual takeaway is a No-No, you actually start to feel quite refreshed after the first couple of days (during which you feel like committing crime).

So for now, and until the time at which I feel like I am in good shape, and feeling healthy, I will be living by the healthy eating. Hopefully it will work out so that by the time December comes I am ready for the beach. If I am ready, I will post pics… otherwise it failed. But irrespective of the results, I feel happy to be healthy and feeling energised. Long live the healthy lifestyle!